The Joint Programme of the European Union and the Council of Europe “Strengthening the Information Society in Ukraine” has completed its work - Національна рада України з питань телебачення і радіомовлення

The Joint Programme of the European Union and the Council of Europe “Strengthening the Information Society in Ukraine” has completed its work

On December 3, by the Conference “Information society of Ukraine: achievements and reform priorities” the Joint Programme of the European Union and the Council of Europe “Strengthening the Information Society in Ukraine” summed up the results of its work in Ukraine. There were discussed issues not only concerning the path traversed, but also about the challenges ahead.

‘The project outcomes have appeared to be beyond our expectations’, Chairman of the National Council Mr Iurii Artemenko said. He also expressed gratitude to the European colleagues for the attention to and comprehensive support of the media industry of our country. A substantial number of projects, among the projects supported and assisted by the European Union and the Council of Europe, have involved the Regulatory Authority in the area of electronic media regulation.

The main achievements of the Programme constituted not only its outcomes, but also the fact that it had succeeded to combine interests of broadcasters, lawmakers, industry, government and public, Mr Iurii Artemenko highlighted.

Mr Iurii Artemenko reminded about the core aspects of cooperation in the framework of the Programme “Strengthening the Information Society in Ukraine”. ‘It was extremely fruitful work on elaboration of a number of legal acts, such as the draft laws on audiovisual services, transparency of media ownership, procedures for conferences on election of the Supervisory Board of the Public Broadcaster etc. It is important for the Regulator to use the advised methodology for the monitoring of broadcasters. Practical application of such methodology allows to conclude whether broadcasters comply with the due impartiality criteria’, he said.

During the period of the programme implementation, there were organized a number of seminars, meetings, trainings and study visits to the regulatory authorities of Europe. Other element of the Programme included the National Council employees training. According to Mr Iurii Artemenko, there was support on the issue of digital broadcasting switchover in Ukraine. He informed that there would be a need for developing methodology of measuring the digital terrestrial television broadcasting coverage by the end of the following year. ‘Despite significant achievements having been obtained with the support of the European Side, there is an essential need for further cooperation. The Programme should be continued. It is essential for the society and the industry’, he said.

Mr Christos Dzhakomopulos, Special Representative Secretary General of the Council of Europe in Ukraine, Mr Dirk Van Eeckhout, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Belgium, Mr Jurgis Vilcinskas, Head of Press and Communication at the EU Delegation in Ukraine and Mr Yves Salomon, Expert of the Council of Europe, spoke on the aspects of further cooperation.

According to Mr Christos Dzhakomopulos, in 2016 cooperation will continue by means of new projects of the Council of Europe and the European Union that will be focused on the proper implementation of legislation. At the same time, it is important that reforms in the media area take place in the framework of the general reform.

The Conference was also attended by Mr Oleg Nalyvayko, Chairman of the State Committee for Television and Radio Broadcasting of Ukraine; Mrs Victoria Syumar, Chairman of the Committee on Freedom of Speech and Information Policy; Mr Zurab Alasania, Director General of the National Television Company of Ukraine.

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